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coffee

Introduction
In Kenya coffee is produced in both small-scale farms and big estates. It is estimated that about 650,000 smallholders and 3,000 estates are engaged in coffee production. The small-scale producers account for about 70% percent of the total coffee area and currently command a 48% share of the market. Over 99% of the country’s production of coffee is arabica.  
 
Kenya’s coffee is grown on unique fertile volcanic soils, which, together with the normally detailed attention given throughout the production, processing and grading will ensure marketing of the best quality beans possible.
Coffee has been one of the main traditional export commodities in Kenya for many decades and the country continues to be the leading supplier of premium coffee in the world market. Kenya is renowned for her Arabica coffee, which is a high quality mild coffee that is favoured all over the world for its blending qualities. As a single origin it is much sought after in the specialty markets particularly in the top AA grade from Kenya.
Coffee Exports
Coffee is among the most important agricultural commodities in world trade. Like most other primary agricultural commodities, the market is characterized by oversupply, declining product prices and increased global competition among producing countries.
 
Kenya exports most of her coffee in bulk. However in the last decade companies have started adding value to their coffee through roasting and packaging under different company brands for the export market.
 
In the 1970s coffee used to be Kenya’s leading foreign exchange earner but over the years, it has been pushed to the fourth position after tourism, horticulture and tea. The value of coffee exports have declined from US$ 206.9 million (Kshs 12.81 billion) in 1998 to US$ 134.1 million (Kshs 9.7 billion) in 2005.
 

One of the reasons for the decline in both the production and exports of coffee has been the marketing arrangements in the country where since 1935, coffee from Kenya has only been traded through the central coffee auction. In an effort to liberalise coffee marketing, the government enacted a law allowing direct sales of coffee to buyers abroad bypassing the auction. In 2006 the government published the rules to govern the direct sales of coffee making the direct coffee marketing operational along side the traditional coffee auction. This is expected to improve both the production and exports of coffee in the country.

Fruiting Coffee Plants
ImageKenya 's coffee is grown on unique fertile volcanic soils which, together with the normally detailed attention given throughout the production, processing and grading, will ensure the marketing of the best quality beans possible.

 
 
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